Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, May 24, 2014)
Word of the Day

freebooter

Definition:(noun) Someone who takes spoils or plunder (as in war).
Synonyms:looter, pillager, plunderer, raider
Usage: He was a genial freebooter, living off the enemy, without fear or shame.
Article of the Day

The Western Wall

The Western Wall, or Kotel, is a retaining wall from the time of the Second Temple in Jerusalem. It is the last standing remnant of the Beit HaMikdash, the holy temple of the Jews that was destroyed by the Romans around 70 CE. The "Wailing Wall" continues to have a powerful hold on the devotion of Jews all over the world. Over the years, millions have come as tourists and pilgrims to pray at the wall and touch its stones. What do the faithful often place in its cracks? More...
This Day in History

USSR Begins Drilling World's Deepest Hole (1970)

The Kola Superdeep Borehole project was an attempt to dig as far as possible into the Earth's crust. It began when, in 1970, following setbacks in the Space Race, Soviet scientists looked downward. Digging on the remote Kola Peninsula for some 20 years, they reached a depth of 40,230 feet (12,262 m)—about a third of the way through the Earth's crust—before being forced to stop due to higher-than-expected temperatures of 350° F (180° C). Surprisingly, water was found at what depth? More...
Today's Birthday

Joseph Brodsky (1940)

Soon after Brodsky began writing poetry in the USSR in the 1950s, he was accused by the government of "social parasitism" and sentenced to hard labor. Exiled in 1972, he settled in New York and began writing in English. He was awarded a Nobel Prize in 1987 and was poet laureate of the US for a time. His poetry, with its themes of loss and exile, is highly regarded for its intensity, depth, and wit. What was his retort when a Soviet judge once asked him, "Who enrolled you in the ranks of poets?" More...
Quotation of the Day
Being born in a duck yard does not matter, if only you are hatched from a swan's egg.

Hans Christian Andersen (1805-1875)

Idiom of the Day

keep (one's) slate clean

To maintain an impeccable record; to refrain from committing any mistakes or wrongdoings. More...
Today's Holiday

Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day) (2017)

Jerusalem Day commemorates the capture and reunification of Jerusalem during the Six-Day War (on 28 Iyyar 5727 on the Jewish calendar—June 7, 1967), after which Israel gained possession of the Old City of Jerusalem and other Arab lands. Although there are no specific rituals connected with this holiday, it is common to recite the Hallel (Psalms 115-118), Psalm 107, and the Aleinu, or concluding prayer. Because this day falls during the Lag ba-Omer period, the mourning customs traditionally observed during this time are suspended for the day. More...
In the News

Protein Discovery May Explain Multiple Sclerosis Gender Gap

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic progressive disease of the central nervous system in which gradual destruction of myelin occurs in the brain and/or spinal cord. In many ways, this disease remains a mystery. Its cause remains uncertain, and there is no known cure. Scientists also have yet to figure out why MS strikes four times as many women as men, but new findings suggest that a protein, S1PR2, may have something to do with it. Researchers found higher levels of this protein in the brains of female mice and women with MS than in male equivalents and speculate that it could make the blood-brain barrier more permeable, allowing harmful substances to attack the brain. More...
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